5.25.2007

The Kitchener Predators?


So Canadian billionaire Jim Balsillie has bought, or at least signed a letter of intent to buy the Nashville Predators. Balsillie the inventor of the Blackberry had already tried to buy the Pittsburg Penguins this year when he backed out because the NHL said that if he bought the team he was not allowed to relocate them. However, things in Nashville are a little different. Here’s why

1) The Predators actually have an out in their lease agreement that if they do not average 14,000 paid attendance a game the owner is allowed to relocate for 18 million dollars

This past year they were 25th in the league with an average attendance of 14,428. However, as the Hockey News Points out that in the attendance with the freebie tickets thrown in. The actually paid attendance was around 12,000.

2) The KitchenerWaterloo area is just outside of the Toronto Maple Leafs territorial rights. If he moved them to Hamilton or anywhere near Toronto you actually have to pay the Maple Leafs to set up shop there. Yet, they would be close enough to possible draw some fans from the area

3) The Predators are having an exceedingly tough time selling their game not only to the fans but to the corporate sponsors that are in Nashville. Corporate sponsors are some of the largest contributors to NHL sporting franchises. If you look at Edmonton one of the main reasons that they want or need a new building is so that they can have more companies buy the luxury boxes. Nashville has a nice arena; however, some of their luxury boxes are actually empty because they can not sell them.

I think that the NHL should hopefully right some of the wrongs that have been done in the past. Approve the sale to Balsillie. Let him take advantage of the lease agreement in Nashville and then move the team north of the border where the game actually matters to the fans.

5 comments:

Rory said...

Winnipeg Predators?

Josh said...

Windsor Predators?

Jon G said...

Waterloo?

Rory said...

Peterborough Predators?

Josh said...

Hamilton Predators it just may be.

http://www.tsn.ca/nhl/news_story/?ID=210000&hubname=